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Gates, Sr. to Address United Methodist General Conference


United Methodist Communications
Office of Public Information
810 12th Ave.S.
Nashville, TN 37203

February 29, 2008

Contact: Diane Denton
(615) 742-5406 (office)
(615) 483-1765 (cell)

Gates, Sr. to Address United Methodist General Conference

NASHVILLE, Tenn.: William H. Gates, Sr., co-chair of the Seattle-based Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and father of billionaire Bill Gates, will speak to the United Methodist General Conference during its upcoming meeting in Fort Worth. 

The Commission on the General Conference extended the invitation at the request of the Council of Bishops.  

In January 2007, the Gates Foundation provided a challenge grant to the Nothing But Nets malaria prevention campaign to match contributions up to $3 million—a goal that was reached in August due in part to a groundswell of support from United Methodist churches across the U.S.  According to the organization’s website, the foundation has committed more than $6 billion in global health grants. 

Gates, Sr. is a retired attorney and co-author of the book Wealth and Our Commonwealth: Why America Should Tax Accumulated Fortunes. 

About General Conference 2008
General Conference is the top policy-making body of The United Methodist Church which meets once every four years.  The conference can revise church law, as well as adopt resolutions on current moral, social, public policy and economic issues. It also approves plans and budgets for church-wide programs for the next four years. The 2008 meeting will take place April 23-May 2 at the Fort Worth Convention Center.

About the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation:
Guided by the belief that every life has equal value, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation works to help all people lead healthy, productive lives. In developing countries, it focuses on improving people’s health and giving them the chance to lift themselves out of hunger and extreme poverty. In the United States, it seeks to ensure that all people—especially those with the fewest resources—have access to the opportunities they need to succeed in school and life. Based in Seattle, the foundation is led by CEO Patty Stonesifer and co-chair William H. Gates Sr., under the direction of Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett.